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NO. R-243. JOINT RESOLUTION RELATING TO RELATIONS BETWEEN THE STATE OF VERMONT AND BURMA.

(J.R.H. 157)

Offered by: Representatives Sullivan of Burlington, Clark of St. Johnsbury, Coleman of Londonderry, Deen of Westminster, Grant of Groton, Parizo of Essex, Rusten of Halifax, Snyder of Pittsford, Suchmann of Chester, Sweaney of Windsor, Vinton of Colchester and Zuckerman of Burlington.

Whereas, since a 1988 military crackdown, the nation of Burma, which has been renamed Myanmar by its military government, has been amongst the most brutal abusers of human rights of any country in the world, and

Whereas, its citizens live in daily fear of political retaliation and physical torture for the mere expression of their opinions, and

Whereas, Burma has become an embarrassment to its neighbors in southeast Asia and a political pariah in the international community of nations, and

Whereas, bravely determined to lead her nation on a new democratic path, the Oxford-educated Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, the daughter of one of Burma's first democratic leaders who himself was assassinated, returned to her homeland and established the National League for Democracy, and

Whereas, shortly after her arrival in the capital, Rangoon, on July 20, 1989, the military authorities placed her under house arrest, and

Whereas, in spite of this restriction, she has symbolized a shining hope for a new Burmese democracy, and led her National League for Democracy to electoral victory in 1990, winning 82 percent of the legislative seats, and

Whereas, in retaliation for this bold expression of political free will, the military dictatorship rejected the election results and slew thousands of her supporters, and

Whereas, Aung San Suu Kyi's fortitude and leadership on behalf of Burmese democracy was internationally recognized when she was awarded the 1991 Nobel Peace Prize, and

Whereas, although she was released from house arrest in July 1995, the government of Myanmar continues to oppress and torture its citizens, thereby shamefully exhibiting one of the worst human rights records on earth, and

Whereas, many American political leaders have strongly condemned the human rightsabuses that have become the trademark of the Myanmar government, now therefore be it

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives:

That the General Assembly supports the efforts of the National League for Democracy in Burma and its leader, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, to move that country towards a democratic form of government, that is respectful of human rights, and requests that the governor insure that no state agency, department or office of state government take any action that would undermine the efforts of the National League for Democracy to achieve its goals, and be it further

Resolved: That the Secretary of State be directed to send a copy of this resolution to the Governor and the Secretary of Administration.